Vonage’s Tough Road Ahead

Just a quick update on the competition between old-school telecom and upstarts like VoIP provider Vonage: Last week, AT&T announced its Unity pricing scheme, which cuts some roaming and per-minute costs for people who subscribe to both its wireless and wireline offerings. According to the company, which advertised the service heavily during Sunday’s NFL championship games, Unity potentially addresses a network of 100 million phone numbers.
Monday, Vonage countered by announcing its new V-Access service, a Rebtel-like plan which will give users EarthLink-type local access numbers to circumvent some long-distance or international roaming fees. To make the Vonage service work, you need Internet access (to find the numbers on the Vonage web site), then you need to dial the local number, then dial another number. Sound easy? Easier than Skype? Or easier than just keeping your AT&T service?